westworld spoiler review

Some of the Human Characters Are Actually Robots

Maybe not all of the human characters are actually human after all. Theresa Cullen (Sidse Babett Knudsen), as Reddit user shelfdog points out, leaves the room in a scene before Dr. Robert Ford (Anthony Hopkins) and Bernard (Jeffrey Wright) examine a malfunctioning robot. Could it be that they made her leave so that the voice commands wouldn’t affect her? Bernard Lowe is Ford’s right-hand man What if he was a creation of Ford?

Harris’ character is apparently based off of Yul Brynner’s Gunslinger character from the original Westworld movie. But in that original film, he was an android that started killing people. Is it possible that The Man in Black is secretly an android? Well, we saw that Teddy couldn’t kill him which should mean he’s a human. But what if he is actually an android, like the original Gunslinger? What if he has not only realized the world he lives in isn’t real but has found ways to reprogram himself and the people around him? This would allow him to shoot down Teddy.

The character seems to be experiencing Westworld like a video game, trying to discover the hidden secrets of the world. Harris told us at the TCAs that we will learn about who his character is in “the outside world, his past, why he is here and who exactly he is.”

He’s been coming here for 30 years. When he first came, he was not the man in black. This is a character he has assumed and developed over the many years he’s been coming to this place. I think initially when he first arrived, he was exploring what his place was like. I can do whatever I want. I can kill people if I need to or make love to strange robotic prostitutes. I think something happened to him at some point that this part of him that’s very dark, very violent, all of a sudden he recognized this was a real part of him he’d never really lived with in his life outside, obviously repressed in civil society for many years and realized this is a part of myself I should check out and see where this takes me. But there’s also a much deeper purpose for him being here at this point. He thinks there’s some deeper level to what’s happening in this park. I’m not sure what it is or why, perhaps Tony’s character is in charge of something that’s not really obvious on the surface. I think he thinks the more chaos he causes, the more destruction he can create with the A.I. folks, [the better], but it’s not random. There’s always some narrative he’s following. Someone gets in his way and he has to blow them away.

Harris’ comments read much differently if you approach the above paragraph under the theory that the Man in Black is an android who has had a self-realization. Reddit user jz68 suggests that for whatever reason, the Man in Black “became self-aware long ago and had been going around looking for answers.”

As for the Man in Black saying ‘I didn’t pay all this money because I wanted it to be easy,’ for some reason, he’s been programmed to think he’s human and retains that part of his programming.

This might also explain why he’s wearing gloves. If he’s an early model, conceivably his hands aren’t up to the standards of the current models in the park.

However, Westworld co-creator Jonathan Nolan explicitly calls the Man in Black a human in a behind-the-scenes video posted by HBO: “He’s a human guest who has taken the fantasy to its utmost extreme. He wants to play the villain; he wants to be the bad guy, omnipotent, manipulative, and evil.” Does this debunk this Westworld theory? It’s not like directors, screenwriters, and showrunners haven’t lied to preserve secrets in the past.

Man in Black rape Westworld

The Man in Black Reprogrammed Dolores

The moment which jumpstarts this entire series is when the Man in Black shows up at the Abernathy homestead. After killing Teddy, he drags Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) away to a barn where it is implied that he rapes her. But what if that wasn’t what actually happened? We never actually saw what happened inside the barn. What if the Man in Black reprogrammed Dolores in some way?

When asked about the rape controversy, Wood told The Hollywood Reporter:

It’s absolutely very rough, I don’t like gratuitous violence against women at all, but I would wait for the context in which it’s being used.

And by the end of the first episode, this robot who was programmed not to harm a living thing is now swatting flies off of her. Dolores’ father also malfunctioned after the visit from the Man in Black. What if the photograph was only part of the reason this happened?

Jonathan Nolan has said that “How much [the robots] can remember is an important question for the season.” At the end of the first episode, it is revealed that Dolores is the oldest “host” at the park. Stubbs (Luke Hemsworth) says that  “she’s been repaired so many times, she’s practically brand new.” Is it possible that Dolores will begin to remember what happened 30 years ago, and maybe even events before that?

What do you think? Have a theory we didn’t touch on? Comment below!

 

If you liked our Westworld theories, please check out our other Westworld features:

 

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